Motorcycle Club » The Roadliner/Stratoliners Road

Looking at buying a 'Liner

20 posts from 13 voices
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  1. auzzie808

    Hello everyone,
    I am considering a Roadliner and just want to get a bit of info from those who have one, or have had one.
    I currently have the Vstar 1300, and love it, but I do like the idea of a 1854cc (113 cubic inch) motor.
    I figure I would change the seat and the bars, like most people do anyway, so I'm not concerend about those things.
    If you don't mind giving me a bit of a run down on the Riadliner, I would appreciate it.

    At what revs does the rev limiter cut in on the Liner?
    What sort of revs in each gear is "normal" use?
    What sort of kph (or mph) would be considered "normal"?
    What sort of top end have we got on this old girl?
    How does the Liner "go"- I mean, does it get up and go, or is it a more wind it on and wait affair?
    How does it handle? Say, compared to the 1300 which I have? (and which I am pretty happy with-it does what I want when I want), or to a Warrior, for instance?
    What sort of milage per tank do you get in general use, on open road runs?
    Any issues with changing the oil and filter - are these easy to get at on these bikes?
    What would be the most benificial modifications for a Liner - I'm guessing, pipes, air, seat, bars - the same stuff we do to every bike we get....
    Thanks for your input people.

  2. PDXScodd

    I've only had my Stratoliner a couple of months. I'll take a crack at some of your questions...i'm in Blue...

    At what revs does the rev limiter cut in on the Liner?
    I'm scared to find out!

    What sort of revs in each gear is "normal" use?
    I tend to keep the bike within the 2-3K range for most riding. I'm a big guy, and when I'm at 70-75 mph (110-120 kph) the bike is at 2,700-2,800 rpm's. There is a real power band at 2,200+ rpm's in every gear.

    What sort of kph (or mph) would be considered "normal"?
    That my friend, depends on how tight the turns in the road are or how long the straight stretch is! LOL Or more importantly, how far the police are from you!!

    What sort of top end have we got on this old girl?
    I'm a pussy

    How does the Liner "go"- I mean, does it get up and go, or is it a more wind it on and wait affair?
    I test rode the 1100 and found it pretty flat (even as a new rider). When I got on the 1300, I thought WOW! This bike really pulls. When I test rode the Stratoliner (right after the 1300), I felt the same pull as the 1300, but with much less turn of the throttle! Both the 1300 and the Stratoliner were more than powerful enough. However the Strat was a demo, and I got it for 25% off!

    How does it handle? Say, compared to the 1300 which I have? (and which I am pretty happy with-it does what I want when I want), or to a Warrior, for instance?
    I don't have enough experience to reference other bikes. However, can say that people (all sorts of people) warned me against getting the Stratoliner as my first motorcycle because it was too big. They tried to shoo me into a 1100 or even a 950. But I think that the Stratoliner has been a great bike to ride - even as a new rider! It's balanced and handles very well.

    What sort of milage per tank do you get in general use, on open road runs?
    Around town (lots of spirited riding!), I get 130 miles (210 km) before the warning light comes on. On the road, it's closer to 145+ miles (230 km). I think that will improve as I only have 2,500 miles (4K km) on the bike.

    Any issues with changing the oil and filter - are these easy to get at on these bikes?
    No problem - I bring it to the shop and they change my oil. My hands don't even get dirty! LOL

    Good luck with your decision. The Stratoliner is a fantastic looking and riding motorcycle.

    Scott T

  3. gen

    I just picked up an 06 Strat, moving up from a 93 Vulcan 750. After the first few hours on it I can't believe I even considered a smaller bike. It's only been less than a week but I am very happy with my Strat. Get one.

  4. agevlrite

    I have never hit the rev limit. So I cant help there but I am getting on the bike pretty hard.

  5. rltovnz1

    I've had my stratoliner for a while now and I can say that yes it does have plenty of giddyup and go, but it is not a sport bike. It is a fairly heavy bagger, but the benefit of the 1900cc engine is the torque. It'll pull hills in 5th gear that other bikes have to drop down a gear or two to pull and it will pull a trailer no sweat, even up that steep ole hill.

    The liner is fast, like I said, but if you are looking for pure speed you won't be happy. When you hit around 100mph it starts to top out and you start running out of gear. It'll go a little faster but I can't imagine much as I didn't push it much passed 105mph, the revs were getting pretty high. But, I can tell you that it does get up there pretty darned quick, but the power band starts to lag and drop off the closer you get to 4k rpm.

    You have to remember this is a big motor with a long piston stroke for high bottom end grunt. I can attest to the fact that the stratoliner will wheelie quite easily in 2nd gear if you stab the gas and pull back.

    As for mileage from what I get and what other people on the forum have posted I think the average in town mileage is around 30-34mpg and on the hiway between 38-42 depending on how you operate your throttle. Some post numbers of 50mpg but I've never seen it and of the several liner owners I know and ride with say they never got 50mpg out of theirs either.

    The handling of the liner is awsome for the size of bike it is. I have no problem with low speed handling even with a passenger and loaded bags. You shouldn't have any problem doing full lock to lock slow turns in a parking lot and don't be afraid of scraping the floorboards.

    The best mods to do to the liner that I can think of off the top of my head (and this is just my opinion) is to get a set of bucks lowers first thing. Yamaha made a great bike but they f'ed up when they forgot the lowers for the stratoliner. I would personally get a set of rear crash bars to protect the bags in case of a tip over. While my bike has never been down, I have seen one that had been down and those factory bags are expensive to replace. Whatever set of crashbars you get for the front I wouldn't bother with the lindby bars unless you just like the looks of them. Even though they have the built in foot rests they are so far foward you can't hardly get your feet on them without nut hugging the gas tank, and I'm 6' tall, plus it's hard to get your feet on and off them without bumping your foot controls. Also, yamaha could have included the passenger floor boards on the bike from the factory but they didn't, just some cheap a$$ pegs, so if you take a passenger regularly, get some rear floor boards.

  6. auzzie808

    Thanks for your input gents.
    I do like the idea of a big grunty 1854 cc motor chugging away.
    I'm not particularly interested in top end speed, just curious. One of my riding mates has a Warrior, and loves to "squirt past" me on the 1300, so a bit of get up and go would be handy to pull him back in!!
    I think the 'Liner is about 35kg (80 lbs) heavier than my 1300, and I don't have a problem with her when she's loaded to the max with camping gear etc, so the weight of a 'Liner shouldn't bother me.
    I know what you mean about the torque, just pulling up a hill with no problems. I have ridden the Warrior, and it just eats the hills without a worry.
    As for mileage per tank, I'd be happy with 250klm (156 miles) per tank before reserve. I guess she's got about 30 miles (50 klm) left in her after the light comes on, so about 280 - 300 klm before you have to push.
    I notice that everybody is talking about the Sratoliner, and noone seems to have the Roadliner...why is that?
    Do most just preferr the screen etc that comes with the Srat?
    What are the differences between the 2 anyway?
    We only get the Roadliner here in Australia, so it doesn't really matter, I'm just curious.
    Ayway, thanks agin.
    Have a great weegend.

  7. alpj

    hello aussie 1300 sorry i cant help you, i only have a royal star convertable (aussie version of the tour deluxe) just stop off to say hi to another brisbane boy

  8. Tacgtriwer

    There is really no difference between the Strat and the Roadie. Some dealers even buy kits to turn Roadies into Strats. Unless you dont plan on touring at all, its really not worth it to buy the Roadie. The cost differential if you want to add accessories later makes the Strat the better deal. On the other hand, you can Roadie-ize a strat in like 20 minutes.

  9. bhoenix3

    I have a 2006 Roadliner Midnight and I would give it a solid 9 out of 10. I have all the quick removal "Strat package" (bags, backrest, and windshield) which I love to convert the bike in about 2 minutes....although I did order the short windshield instead of the medium size. This really cuts down on the glare from the speedo guages.

    I would REALLY REALLY REALLY recommend getting a windshield or even lowers if you are planning on doing a lot of highway riding as this bike with the wide bars can be like a parachute at high speeds. I am not a fan of the handlebars at all and would change them if I knew of a good set that would work to slightly pull them back and definately narrow the width.

    The handling is excellent and would be even better with narrower bars...again the wide bar issue.

    As for the motor, forget looking anywhere else, this is the best V-twin on the market. If your buddy likes the warrior motor he would love this beast. the powerband is wide so you don't need to be shifting every 1000 RPM just to keep the power. You need to keep her breathing above 2000 RPM and just LOVES to run at 2,500+ all the way to 4500+....and yes, I have pushed it against the redline and this motor doesn't even care. Just make sure you aren't one of those guys who wants to ride in the highest gear possible because it WILL bog down if you try and excellerate from 1200-1600 RPM....find the right gear that keeps her at or above 2000 RPM.

    Anyone who tells you they get 50+ MPG I would really question. When I run her hard I get about 33-35 MPG. When I baby it and run a lot of highway riding I can get up around you are looking at about 150 miles to reserve and then another 32-38 once you hit the reserve light. No way in Hell could I get 50 MPG out of this motor.

    As for accessories: I would also recommend the bar protection for the bags and passenger floor boards.

    Maintenance: I have heard some folks cuss this thing for how difficult it is to get to some parts where others say that once you get to know the bike it really isn't that bad. My advice would be if you are planning on working on her yourself just make sure you have a little patience and anything can be accomplished in your own garage.

    Again, I would give this bike a 9 out of 10. The styling isn't for everyone everyday (which is the way it should be), and I'm not a fan of the bars much but then again that is just me......everything else is head and shoulders above any competitive bike on the none.

  10. TRaiterJohn

    The sissy bar, windscreen, and bags (and color choices) are the only differences between the two 'liners. I love my Strat for all the reasons mentioned above. Excellent highway manners, decent economy, carries two up without complaints, blah, blah...

    The rev limiter must be set at about 5100 rpm. I've hit it on my Raider, but never on the 'liner. When I took it to the dyno, that's where the curves drop off, right about 5100.

    The only thing I wish it had is a 6th gear for highway speeds. I prefer to take the back roads rather than the Interstates, but I occasionally have to try to fit into traffic doing 70 mph (120 kph) or more. Don't get me wrong,the thing will cruise all day at 4000 rpm, but I don't like to.

    Enjoy the ride...

  11. zamwen

    SHIFT into 5th man. My Roadliner is doing 3000 rpm at 75 indicated which is really 70 according to the GPS. I do notice that after being on back roads that 3000 rpm sounds busy but the wind noise is so bad that I have started wearing ear plugs if I plan on being on the superslab and that has cured the engine noise problem too. I think most of it is just what you are used too. I moved up from a Suzuki C50 and that bike always ran above 3000 and on the highway it was closer to 5000. For the longest time I ran the Liner the same way because I was afraid I would lug the motor. Now after just 1600 miles and running mostly between 2000 and 2500 rpm it is starting to sound busy at 3000. But I have to admit that with the power this bike has they could have spaced the gears a little further apart, But I think our 5th has the same final ratio as the new HD has in 6th.

  12. auzzie808

    Hey zamwen,
    so what sort of revs are you doing through the gears?
    Is the Roadliner happy to sit on 70 - 75 mph (about 125 - 120 - 130 kph) all day, and roughly what sort of revs for that?
    Have you found the rev limiter?
    On the 1300 it cuts in around 6300 rpm, and it cuts the power off so the motor starts to "stutter", I imagine the Roadliner would do the same.
    One more question, is the Raider geared diffrently to the Liner?
    Cheers guys, thanks for your help.
    I have had a chat with a dealer and we are starting to crunch numbers, so I may own a Liner soon.

  13. zamwen

    I have never hit the rev limiter. I had it wound up to about 4500 rpm once but you can start to tell that the power has leveled off and the bike is not accelerating as fast as it was so I shifted. On the highway if I am just moving with traffic at a true 70 mph the rpm settle down around 2800-2900 rpm and the bike is just cruising along. It is very comfortable at this speed. When I start getting north of 75 actual the RPM are running 3000-3100 and is just starting to sound busy. This is also the point were I notice the mirrors are not real clear. I can still use them fine but they are just starting to vibrate a bit. I am hopeing that with a few more miles things will smooth out. I have noticed that the bike runs smoother now than it did when brand new or at least it feels looser. The engine seems to respond faster.
    If you are just driving with traffic I usually shift around 2500 if you run it up to 3000 you will be running away from most of the cars except the ones that think they are racing you and if you shift at 4000 I have not found a car that can keep up yet. If you dont have a driver backrest you better be holding on tight when you hit the next gear.
    After I started wearing ear plugs one day I found myself cruising along at 65 or 70 with traffic and after a few miles it struck me that the engine sounded a little louder than normal but I didnt think much about it until I went around a car and accellerated to get up to left lane speed, about 75 and realized I was still in 4th. On my old C50 I would never have made that mistake because the engine would be screaming at me. I would shift into 5th at 65 but I would never be able to cruise at that speed in 4th. I dont think the liner would have any trouble doing 85 or 90 in 4th gear.
    I dont know if the gearing is the same on the Raider but I imagine that it is. They may use a different pully or the rear tire may be taller.

  14. TRaiterJohn

    First, the rev limiter -- On the dyno, the Raider and the 'Liner both hit the limit at about 5100 rpm.

    Second speed vs. rpm - Somebody's tach or speedo isn't right. zamwen says 3000 rpm @75 mph. My 'liner's tach is around 3500 at 70 mph (can't tell for sure on that little tach) But it will run there all day long or until it runs out of gas. But if you stop for a leg stretch and a fluid exchange every couple hours that won't be a problem. It will haul the mail.

    Third , gearing -- the only difference known to me between the Raider and the 'Liner is that the Raider rear pulley has four fewer teeth than the 'liner (66 vs. 70). That along with the difference in the rear tire diameter is enough difference that you can feel it in the hole shot (Raider is quicker) and top end (the 'liner is faster) and the 'liner will get a bit better mileage. But about 40 mpg, 85 hp, and 100 ft-lb out of the box, who cares...really.

  15. zamwen

    That is very interesting. I would be curious if others would post their indicated speed vs the RPM. The tach is really too small to be very accurate but it should be good enough to get within 1-200 rpm. The other thing I would like to see is for those that have a gps the indicated vs the actual speed. That may make the differance. I will make an effort this weegend to make a log of different speeds indicated and actual. Mine was off by 5 mph at 65 when I first got the bike but I have not had the gps mounted since then.

  16. rltovnz1

    My strat is all stock and I'm running 2900rpm (+/- 100rpm) at 70mph true speed(almost 75mph indicated)

  17. ru1id

    5th gear
    2800 rpm 70mph
    I think:
    2000 rpm 50mph

  18. zhifdhabbj6

    My Liner says 3000 @ 75mph, same as zamwen

  19. PDXScodd

    Anyone know why the Speed-O is off on a stock Stratoliner? I know when I changed tires on my Chrysler 300 C, I had to adjust the speedometer to accommodate the new tire size (my tuner chip allowed me to put in the tire size in inches to get an accurate speedometer). What's up with the Stratoliner? I’ll try to put my GPS on my bike and get a good reading of speed vs. speedometer and RPM’s.

  20. SDDawe

    Other than the shield, bags, and passenger backrest, the Strat has stiffer rear suspension, which will benefit 2 up riding with gear.

    I purchased a Roadliner, then added the medium quick release windshield and passanger backrest. I read about the bags being a bit small, and I didn't really need them anyway. I also read that bracket for the bags can be an eyesore when the bags are removed.

    I would have probably just bought the Strat, but I found a new Roadliner for $9,999 at my local dealer.

    Great bike - go for it, you won't be sorry.



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